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Rated: ASR · Short Story · Contest Entry · #2225770
Whom knows whom took it?
The King was flummoxed. The Queen was flummoxed. The Ministers of the Royal Court (MRC for short) were ... you got it ... flummoxed.

"Your Majesty and Your Majesty," the Chief MRC (CMRC for short) said, bowing so low his nose touched the ground, "it is a total mystery."

"Stand up, CMRC," the Queen ordered, regally. "We can't hear you properly when you speak with your nose touching the ground like that. And besides, you'll get dirt on it. The ground, not your nose."

CMRC stood up, all 5'5" of him. "It is a real mystery. We've padlocked the door. We've put in a closed-circuit camera. We've even got infr-red rays zipping across doors and windows. And yet ..." his voice faltered.

"And yet WHAT, CMRC?" the King thundered.

"And yet, Your Royal Highness and Your Royal Highness, the chocolate has disappeared again."

"Off with his hair!" the Queen ordered.

The Royal Barber stepped forward, and, zzzing, zzwip, zzwoop, in three seconds, CMRC was as bald as the day he was born.

Valiantly holding back his tears, he continued, "We don't know how this crime was committed, Your Excellency and Your Excellency. All we know is, the fruit and nut chocolate has been gnawed, the milk chocolate has been nibbled, and the dark chocolate has been clean gobbled away."

Just then, there was some disturbance at the palace gate.

"Who is it? Let them in, whoever they are," the King ordered.

The Juniormost Royal Guard (JRG for short) stumbled in. "Your Greatness and Your Greatness," he gasped. "We have a clue!"

"A clue?" the King, Queen, CMRC and all the MRC chorused.

"A clue. A clue to the missing chocolate,"

"What is the clue?"

"There was a yellow suitcase found abandoned just beyond the fence surrounding the Royal Chocolate House. It has a unicorn printed on it. We suspect the thief dropped it when one of my colleagues shouted 'stop thief'!"

"Hard of hearing, was he? He heard 'drop' for 'stop'?" the King asked.

"Be that as it may, dear, let's investigate this. Whom do we know, whom owns a yellow suitcase with a unicorn on?"

"Who," the King corrected. "Who do we know."

"That's what I said. Whom do we know ..."


"Yes, whom."

"Who, dear. Whom is used only when it's the subject of the sentence, not the object."

"Your Bigness and Your Bigness," CMRC interrupted, "I'm sorry to interrupt this grammar lesson, but time is of the essence. You see, the thief might be lurking here still."

"Nonsense," the Queen said. "The thief wouldn't lurk after running, not if he or she was carrying a lot of chocolate in hand, being suitcase-less. He or she would run even more. You might look for footprints."

"Footprints!" CMRC said. "Good members of the royal court, go look for footprints!"

There was a stampede. Everyone headed for the Royal Chocolate House. Soon, everyone present was absent, except for the King, the Queen and CMRC. They moved in a more dignified fashion to the Royal Chocolate House, and found everyone there following everyone else's newly created footprints, and going 'aha a match' as the footprint matched the upturned shoe in front of them.

Once everyone had been declared a suspect because their footprints were in the garden around the Royal Chocolate House, (except the Queen who had been clever enough to tiptoe), the investigation began in full swing.

It was the Junior Guard (now promoted to Guard in Chief or GiC) who had suggested the way. Since the thief had been carrying the suitcase tucked under the elbow, every suspect (that excludes Her Highness, remember) had to tuck the suitcase under the elbow. Then, Cinderella style, if it fitted, voila, you had the thief.

One by one, they tried.

And tried.

The yellow suitcase with the unicorn design didn't fit anyone's elbow.

"Why is that man lurking there?" the King asked suddenly. The King was irritable because he had been elbow-tucked and his wife hadn't and that wasn't fair.

All of them looked.

It was Robert Edward Baker.

"Not lurking, not lurking, Your Most Esteemed Chocolateness - I mean Highness," he said, with an ingratiating smile.

"You have given yourself away!" the Queen shouted. "Why did you say chocolateness? It is your guilt, condemning you in your own Freudian slip!"

The CMRC blushed a bit. A Freudian slip sounded like something personal to him. Nonetheless, he brought the suitcase.


Robert Edward Baker

It fit perfectly!

********* ********* *********

You'll be happy to know they forgave Robert. The MRC decided, unanimously, that for a chocolate addict to steal chocolate wasn't a crime, it was an act of nature. He walked free -- straight to the nearest chocolate bar.

Which is why the joke - Robert walked into a bar ...

But that's another story. *Wink*

Full Counts
All Words: 787
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